Writes of CD’s recent visit to Cambridge and the joy it gave him.
May 30 1870
My dear Darwin
Your very kind letter surprised me— Not that I was surprised atthe pleasant & very welcome feeling with which it was written.f1 ButI could not make out what I had done to deserve the praise of“extraordinary kindness of yourself & family”. I would mostwillingly have done my best to promote the objects of your visit butyou gave me no opportunity of doing so. I was truly grieved to findthat my joy at seeing you again was almost too robust for your stateof nerves, & that my society, after a little while, became oppressiveto you. But I do trust that your Cambridge visit has done youno constitutional harm—nay rather that it has done you somegood— I only speak honest truth when I say that I was overflowingwith joy when I saw you; & saw you in the midst of a dear family party& solaced at every turn by the loving care of a dear Wife &Daughters.f2 How different from my position—that of a very oldman, living in cheerless solitude!
May God bless & cheer you all with the comfort of hopefulhearts!—you & your Wife, & your Sons & Daughters!—
You were talking about my style of writing— I send you my lastspecimen; & it will probably continue to be my last— It is thecontinuation of a former Pamphlet of which I have not one sparecopy— I do not ask you to read it.f3 It is addressed to the oldpeople in my native Dale of Dent, on the outskirts ofWestmorland—while standing at the door of the old vicarage I cansee down the valley the Lake mountains—Hill Bell at the head ofWindermere about 20 miles off—f4 On Thursday next D.V.f5 I am to startfor Dent which I have not visited for full two years.— Two yearsago I could walk three or four miles with comfort— Now, alas!, Ican only hobble about on my stick
I remain your true hearted old friend | A Sedgwick